4 Keys for Creating New Rituals of Connection for Blended Families

4 Keys for Creating New Rituals of Connection for Blended Families

The blended family is the “new” family structure. Yet, making a blended family blend is easier said than done.

In short, blending families is not exactly as The Brady Bunch portrayed. Rather, creating new traditions and rituals of connection may end up looking more like a football pileup than a happily blended family.

What you can expect are good intentions mixed with some trial and error. Unfortunately, no manual exists for such a situation. (I’m sure the Brady parents are working on that.)

However, motivated by a loving heart, you can most certainly write your own book on how to create new rituals of connection.

Here are a few keys to start you off.

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Dealing with the Holidays After the Death of a Loved One – 3 Practical Steps

Dealing with the Holidays After the Death of a Loved One – 3 Practical Steps

After the death of a loved one, traditions and family rituals can feel a lot like climbing a mountain. It can be so tough.

Especially if those events occur around the holidays.

Sadly, grief and loss don’t take a reprieve. Illness, accidents, and even death happen no matter what season it is. But those of us left with missing someone have to find a way to carry on, impossible as it may seem.

If you’re like many facing the holidays after the death of a loved one, you may have felt dread creep up as soon as the leaves started to fall.

It’s natural not to want to face special moments without your loved one. Yet, it doesn’t have to strip you of all your joy. After all, their memory lives on in you.

Here are three practical tips to help you deal with the holidays after the death of a loved one.

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Divorced Parents: 7 Tips to Make the Holidays Smoother for Your Children

Divorced Parents: 7 Tips to Make the Holidays Smoother for Your Children

From the outside, it may seem like a bonus for children of divorced parents to have two of every holiday.

Yet, it can be a stressful time for each parent. Naturally, children sense this type of stress and tension, creating a less-than-ideal holiday for them as well.

Let’s face it, both divorce and co-parenting are hard. Furthermore, sharing children can get complicated whether you’re on good terms with your ex-partner or not. Especially around the holidays!

And it doesn’t matter if this is your first co-parenting holiday or your 15th, the holidays can still be difficult to navigate.

Here are a few tips to make the holidays a bit smoother for your children. Oh, and you as well!

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Trouble Eating Healthy During the Holidays? – How to Make Good Food Choices

Trouble Eating Healthy During the Holidays? – How to Make Good Food Choices

Eating healthy during the holidays is a concern on most of our minds this time of year.

As the weather turns chilly and the leaves start to fall, many of us shift into a sort of hibernation mode.

Unlike a drowsy grizzly bear—whom nature has actually granted with a hefty winter sleep—you likely still have to go to work, care for the family, and attend holiday get-togethers.

At these aforementioned holiday events is when the eating problems commonly arise. After all, with such an array of deliciousness, how can you not taste it all?

Here are a few seasonal tips to eating healthy during the holidays.

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The Holidays Are Coming! – 5 Tips to Keep Levels of Anxiety Low

The Holidays Are Coming! – 5 Tips to Keep Levels of Anxiety Low

For many people, the holiday season can bring a mix of emotions.

In fact, feeling depressed or anxious is not uncommon in the least bit. It can get tricky to keep levels of anxiety low in the midst of the seasonal hustle and bustle.

Experiencing your own unique hodgepodge of emotions may have caught you off-guard. Or perhaps you’ve been dreading the holiday stress since May.

No matter what your situation, consider these practical tips to keep levels of anxiety low.

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Bullying Prevention at Home: How to Raise a Child, Not a Bully

 Bullying Prevention at Home: How to Raise a Child, Not a Bully

Bullying has a stigma attached to it.

And bullying prevention often carries the same negative reputation.

After all, what parent wants their child to bully other children? Likely, no one reading this post.

Yet, it’s so easy for parents to look the other way when behavioral signs point in the direction of bullying conduct from their own child.

Furthermore, children prone to bullying at school often exhibit well-mannered and good behavior at home. This can make bullying prevention a bit more tricky.

So, how do you raise a child rather than a bully?

Consider these practical parenting tips.

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Why Respectful Communication and Clear Boundaries Are Important for Effective Parenting

Why Respectful Communication and Clear Boundaries Are Important for Effective Parenting

If you’re like most parents, you’ve learned in real time that this parenting gig is no easy job.

Basically, it’s tough. And that’s putting it gently.

On top of raising one or a brood of positive contributors to society, there’s the matter of maintaining your own dreams and goals. Then, of course, you also have to comply with many unspoken societal standards and sort through the mounds of so-called parenting instructional manuals.

Oh… and have I mentioned that it’s a tough job?

So, how do you manage it?

Is effective parenting even doable? Or is it an impossible feat where survival is the only option?

Take heart in knowing that effective parenting is possible. You can raise a great kid or an entire brood of them.

But for your parenting endeavor to be ultra successful, you’ll need a hefty mixture of respectful communication and clear boundaries.

Here’s why.

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Cohabitation Issues: When Convenience Is Confused with Love

 Cohabitation Issues: When Convenience Is Confused with Love

Although living together pre-marriage hasn’t always been trendy or even accepted, it’s old news nowadays.

Many people consider cohabiting as the level of commitment right before marriage. Others tend to view it as a substitute for marriage.

Also, there is the unforgettable but often overlooked gray zone of romance. This is the zone where cohabitation issues arise and living together takes on a new meaning.

When it comes to sharing a living space, it’s unsurprising that partners often confuse convenience with love. After all, cohabiting offers a sense of security that few people want to leave behind.

But what does this do to the idea of love? And how does this gray zone promote cohabitation issues?

Here’s the scoop on this common mix-up.


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Why Support Is So Important for Chronic Illness Treatment

Why Support Is So Important for Chronic Illness Treatment

In chronic illness treatment, caring for your physical ailment is likely at the forefront of your mind.

Often, that may cause you to leave your overall wellness somewhere towards the back, falling behind a hefty list of prescriptions and your daily to-do list.

It’s only natural to focus directly on your chronic illness treatment. In fact, you need to.

Keep in mind, though, that you are more than a physical being. Made up of emotions and thoughts, your body and mind reflect each other more than you may know.

For this reason, it’s vital to surround yourself with a stable support system.

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When You’re Afraid of Relationships – 5 Tips to Overcome Your Insecurity

When You’re Afraid of Relationships – 5 Tips to Overcome Your Insecurity

When you’re afraid of relationships, there’s usually a good reason. Perhaps you were hurt, scared of being tied down, or are simply tired of trying so hard without your efforts being reciprocated.

These are all valid reasons to be skittish about romance. After all, love is a big deal. And so are your emotions, for that matter.

Most people will tell you that you just need to dive in, facing your fears. They say it will all work out.

Except… that it won’t.

You may even unknowingly sabotage your own relationship.

So, before diving in head first, consider these tips for overcoming your own insecurity.

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Are You and Your Spouse Considering a Divorce? – How Discernment Counseling Can Help

Are You and Your Spouse Considering a Divorce? – How Discernment Counseling Can Help

Divorce is one of the most impacting decisions you will ever make. It will affect you for the rest of your life.

Yet, sometimes it’s the right way to go.

Knowing when it’s time to call it quits doesn’t come easily. Usually, making a life-altering decision like divorce requires time to identify your true desires and weigh your options.

Some people spend a vast amount of time deliberating, unable to pull the trigger on either staying married or getting divorced. This feeling of limbo can become very uncomfortable, exacerbating the problem.

If this situation sounds all too familiar, perhaps it’s time you consider discernment counseling.

Different from other forms of therapy, this type of counseling focuses on couples who are seriously considering divorce. It can help you figure out what you really want.

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Help! My Parents Are Getting Older!” – 6 Tips for Caring for Aging Parents

Help! My Parents Are Getting Older!” – 6 Tips for Caring for Aging Parents

While it may be your deepest calling, caring for aging parents is no small task.

From trying to understand confusing healthcare plans to meeting with an attorney to solidify a will, the elderly don’t have it easy. And, in helping them, you don’t have it easy either.

But even in the midst of declining health, financial worries, and the overall anxiety that often befalls humans during the golden years, you and your parents can find peace.

Let’s face it, getting old is hard work. Hard work that none of us can avoid.

Nevertheless, here are six valuable tips on how to maintain your calm as your parents age and require more of your help.

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Pets for Seniors: 5 Amazing Health Benefits

Pets for Seniors: 5 Amazing Health Benefits

No one truly knows what it’s like to grow old until it happens to them.

And when it does, it can be tough to handle.

Having a faithful companion by their side during the golden years could be the difference between living healthy and living distressed. These are likely the things you think about in caring for your aging friend or family member.

Be comforted in knowing that many scientific studies point to the benefits of pets for seniors.

Here are a few of those benefits.

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Exercise for Anxiety: How Physical Activity Promotes Anxiety Relief

Exercise for Anxiety: How Physical Activity Promotes Anxiety Relief

If someone advised you to exercise for anxiety relief, would you take it as a candy-coated hint to workout?

After all, getting into shape is the new cool trend.

Here’s the thing about using exercise for anxiety relief—there’s actually a science to it.

Maybe getting into shape should be on your to-do list. It should be on mine, too. But not just to make friends with the scale. More than anything, it helps to relieve anxiety symptoms like shakiness, muscle tension, and shortness of breath, to name a few.

Exercise can even help you to react differently to anxiety. Here’s how it works.

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The Gut-Brain Connection: How Your Diet Can Improve Your Depression

The Gut-Brain Connection: How Your Diet Can Improve Your Depression

At times, it may seem that your gut-brain connection is limited to pestering you with cravings.

Or perhaps you only sense a link between the two when it’s nearly mealtime.

Unsurprisingly, most people don’t realize the impacting relationship the gut and brain have on each other. In terms of depression, for example, various environmental factors like diet, stress, and smoking can influence it.

To understand how you can improve your depression, it’s important to first wrap your head around your gut-brain connection.

Here’s the scoop.

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Struggling with Self-Esteem and Body Image Issues? – 5 Powerful Self-Care Tips

Struggling with Self-Esteem and Body Image Issues? – 5 Powerful Self-Care Tips

For some, looking into the mirror is an unpleasant experience.

Perhaps an inadequate reflection stares back at you when you look in your mirror at home.

Struggling with body image issues has a way of getting you down. Not only can you feel your self-esteem plummet but all those tiny imperfections you see often become insurmountable.

Despite appearing externally healthy to others, you may feel like a huge spotlight is shining on things you’d love to change about yourself. In fact, at times, you are likely overwhelmed with the feeling of never being enough.

When body image issues overwhelm you, here are a few tips on how taking care of yourself will keep your self-esteem from taking a nose dive.

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Looking for Anxiety Relief? – 10 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Starting an Anti-Anxiety Medication

Looking for Anxiety Relief? – 10 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Starting an Anti-Anxiety Medication

Jumping headfirst into an unknown body of water seems a little extreme,  right?

And you’re right. It is extreme.

Even more so, it’s unhealthy. You have no idea what to expect when you hit the water. Something surprising might be in there turning the calm-looking water into an unexpected challenge.

Looking for anxiety relief, many people dive in headfirst when it comes to taking anti-anxiety medication. But, sadly, like the diving scenario, that approach is extreme and unhealthy.

It’s important to cover your bases before opting for medication!

Here are 10 questions to start you out on the right foot.

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How to Employ These 6 Powerful Stress Busters During Remodeling

How to Employ These 6 Powerful Stress Busters During Remodeling

During a remodel, your home goes from being your safe haven to a building site.

Although you’re probably really looking forward to the finished project, the process might feel rather intrusive.

From drywall dust to budgeting concerns and everything in between, keeping your cool might prove to be difficult during remodeling. Even more than squeezing every last penny out of your budget, you might be searching for stress busters to maintain your calm.

Here are a few tips to help you get through the remodeling process and keep your nerves from fraying.

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